Friday, September 09, 2016
Judging at Portage Park
I really need to stop trusting some Internet maps on how to get places. Luckily, I left the house early enough, so I got to the boxing show at Portage Park yesterday on time. And yay, they had a parking lot so I didn't have to worry about getting a ticket.
Donovan did not go to that show. I had advised him not to because I figured there would be no fight for him there. I was right. Only a few parks were represented. Unfortunately, that meant that James, who showed up with his parents, wasn't able to get a fight. There was an eight-year-old boy from Garfield Park who could have been a match for him. However, James was 34 pounds heavier. George, the coach at Garfield Park, didn't agree to making the match, and rightfully so.
Still, I felt bad about telling James that he wouldn't be able to fight that evening. He didn't get a fight at LaFollette or Harrison Park's shows, so that was the third time. James has always been very eager to get a match when he arrives at the shows. James is a quiet child, not given much to being loud and talkative like a lot of other kids are. But I saw the disappointment on his face, and it bothered me. I'm hoping we'll have better luck next week at Loyola Park.
Only five fights were scheduled. I acted as a judge for all of them. There was a match between two boys, Jordan and Ben, whom I had seen fight several times before. Jordan was very hesitant about getting his punches off, while Ben kept pressing in on him. The judges turned their sheets end, but it was decided that both boys were winners.
Marlon, the coach at Portage Park, had one of his boys up against one of Barry's boys from Loyola Park. Everyone in the audience took note of how Marlon's fighter was ducking punches. "You don't have to go that low!" Marlon told him from the corner. But the kid kept doing it. Barry's fighter took advantage of it, too, using uppercuts and body shots to make his points. Both boys were dead tired in round three because they had given out so much energy. Barry's fighter won.
Alan was there, along with his son Matt, but Alan had no fighters with him. Bill, the coach at Hamlin Park, was concerned about the women Alan has in his adult boxing class. Bill had a woman fighter at the show, but there was no one for her to get into the ring with. The only woman I could think of who regularly competes out of Loyola is Kathy. Alan's been reaching out to Geniece to come back and train, but she's hasn't as of yet.
My fall youth boxing classes at LaFollette are slowly gaining registrations. But I'm not expecting full classes until halfway into the fall session. That's how it has been going for the longest. As for the adults, I'll be lucky if a couple of people sign up and stick with it.